The Office :

Stains in Socotra Book

Some of you might have noticed already – In many copies of the regular trade edition (and only in this edition) dark spots appear over time on a couple of pages. I was shocked when I saw it for the first time and was close to burning the full edition of the book. Luckily enough, I was convinced that the problem – though it sucks – isn’t bad enough to bring 500 books to the local landfill.
But let me give you some background information on how these stains could happen – and how it happened: more…

Postcard from Istanbul from :

The Making Of Socotra

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I can proudly announce that my book ‘Socotra’ is ready. It was beautifully printed and carefully bound in Istanbul from August 1 till 19. The people at Ofset Yapimevi did a really great job, I am very very pleased with the results!
Expect to receive your personal copy in the coming two weeks – or order quickly if you haven’t yet. Over 25% of the edition is sold already and the book is not even in bookshops yet.

Postcard from Brussels from :

Allmost there! (Printing the Proofs)

It’s another three days. In three days, I will send my book to the printer. In three days, I will board an aircraft to Istanbul. And in five days an armada of  monstrous offset machines will start printing my book. It’s exciting. It’s nerve wrecking.

The last days (not to say weeks) I was a single-minded nerd, not able to do anything but think about the book, talk about the book, work on the book. As I am writing these lines, I am printing the hard proofs. I am waiting for my proof reader to send me the (hopefully but of course not) errata-free texts.

Today, I will go out with friends and have beers in the sun, the first step in a re-socialization process that hopefully won’t take as long as the production of this book – that is over a year.
At least, the book looks great! (And it does, really.)

let's talk about art :

The Story Behind (the Landing of the Adventurers)

One of the most iconic images of my upcoming ‘Socotra’ book is the Landing of the Adventurers. I summons the whole objective of the project, the character of islands, the idea of travel, and the nature of exploration in one single photograph. I would like to share with you how I took that photograph.

It was during my second stay on Socotra that I met two German travellers. Actually, we first met at the airport in Sana’a already – and then again by chance on the beach of Di Hamri the next day. We got along well and they offered to go along with them for couple of days. One evening I invited them over to my hut and cooked pasta with shrimps for them and I generously shared the little wine I had brought along.

The next day, the next day, they planned to go to the beautiful lagoon of Sho’ab. It is quite remote and only reachable by foot or boat. They asked me along. The currents were strong that day and we were all glad to reach shore after an exhausting hour in the waves. Usually, tourists are brought to the far end of the beach, away from the hamlet of Qabahan. I planned to stay in the village for some days to photograph and to create a genealogy so our boatman directly headed for the settlement. Immediately, all the children gathered on the beach to welcome us. I was the first one to get out of the boat and looked back to take pictures of the others wading through the water. On the spur of a moment, one of the local boys saluted my travel companion. I snapped the photograph.

more…

Postcard from Brussels from :

Very Last Special Editions for Auction

Most of the 100 numbered, stamped, and signed special edition of my upcoming ‘Socotra’ book is sold already. The very last 25 books will now be auctioned. Lovers of opulent photography, book worms, collectors, and Friends of Socotra have now a last chance to secure one of the few remaining copies of the strictly limited edition.

(The idea is to raise additional funds necessary to make the (very expensive) printing of the book possible.)

The special edition includes a 20*30cm print of one of the photographs in the book, and a numbered and signed copy of my Socotra book. Most importantly, supporters will be named and thanked in the final book. (Please also see the initial blog post on the presale for exact information about what the special edition is like.)

(There are also some very very few books of the all hand made and self bound version, covered in goat leather which is died with resin of the rare Dragon Blood Tree from the island Socotra, available – contact me for exact details.)

more…

Postcard from Brussels from :

Yet Another Dummy

I don’t even know how many dummies I produced over the last couple of months but it is at least half a dozen. This is yet another one.

This time, it’s all about the binding of the book. I wanted to see how the combination of open spine, cloth covered hard back, and waist band look. I think: great!

The idea is to have a reference to library bindings (plain cloth cover) but with  a contemporary touch (visible binding). All photographs will be double page spreads running over the fold. The open spine allows the book to open completely flat – for the strongest impression of the images.

For the final book, I want to use black thread for the sewing. Black contrasts very nice with the red of the cover and the white of the paper and will make the sewing more visible, too.  The two versions of the book will be differently stitched. The hand made edition will feature a combination of Coptic and French binding while the regular edition will be sewn.

It kind of makes sense to put a photograph on the title of a photography book, right? I decided for a waistband cover. That way, the beautiful cloth of the cover and the open spine are visible but there’ll be also space for one of the gorgeous panoramics.

What do you think?

Postcard from Istanbul from :

Appointment at the Printing House (it’s getting serious)

A lot of paper.

This Monday, I visited the printer I (most likely) will print with. I won’t disclose the name of the printer or the location here (or rather yet, as things can still change) but I am very very confident. For months on now, I am working on nothing else but the book. I thought that I thought about everything already. The size (quarto), the paper weight (150gsm), the binding (sewed with open spine) but the printer still asked many many questions I never thought of. Lamination of the waist band dust jacket? Foiling or silk printing of the title? And then, “Where shall we deliver the books?” asked the printer.

F*ck, it’s getting serious. It’s getting real. This one question made me realize that soon, my baby (or rather embryo) will be an actual, physicly existing book. With a cover, pages, and a prize tag. People will buy it, people will read it and look at the pictures. Some will like it, others won’t.

But first I have to think about a place where I can get 500 books delivered too. 500 books, that’s big and heavy! This one single question made me realize that the day I will hold the very first book in my hands is getting closer and closer…

Also, the list of pre sold books is getting longer and longer, soon I will have the hundred full and thus the money to actually pay the advance for the printer!

Postcard from Brussels from :

Support my Socotra Book!

Girl in the Highlands

UPDATE: The fund raising was succesful and the book is now regularly available. A big thank you to all supporters.

Dear Friends,

It is over five years ago, that my interest in the very isle Socotra was ignited and almost one year, since I first set foot on it. In the mean time, I explored Socotra and the concept «island», spent over seven weeks worth of shooting on the island, got countless fleabites, took almost 20 000 pictures, walked my feet sore more than once, ruined two lenses and almost my knees, and spent all my savings. Now, after endless months of editing, the writing of many thousand words of text, and production of four dummies and one exhibition, I am at the point that I can proudly say: Yes! I am there; I have a book that is worth standing in one shelf with other great and famous volumes.

Have a preview yourself:

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And this is what friends say who had chance to go through the complete volmume:

“Wow! This body of work is stunningly beautiful. It is magnificent. It is striking and powerful, but also luscious. Bravo!” Ed Kashi, Photographer, National Geographic.

“When you look at Claudius’ panoramics of Socotra, it’s as if you’re immersed in the place 360 degrees.  His photographs of the people there draw you into their lives.” Elizabeth Krist, Senior Photo Editor, National Geographic.

“This photography is visual journalism of the finest kind – powerful, important, and gorgeous.” Andreas Trampe, Head of Photo Department, STERN magazine.

“It’s not an Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin fine arts project, nor is it a photo-naïve National Geographic magazine story, nor is it Alex Webb – just purely visual response – , nor is it ethnographical photography – it is all these great things together. It is a rare example of visually powerful, critical, sophisticated, and intelligent photography.” Paul Lowe, Professor, University of The Arts London.

 

On almost 130 pages and 50 photographs, the volume explores one of the most bizarre places on earth. The magic and fantasy of the place is intriguing and the isle is the perfect scene for a visual journey into the concept of islands.

The book is ready to print – I just got first quotes of printing houses. The devastating news is: Nearly 10,000 Euro printing costs alone! I do not have this money but I believe nonetheless in my book – and I believe in you!

Help me pull this project off – to make the printing of my book possible, I need 100 supporters! Supporters who pre-order books and help me advance money for the print. If you pledge a minimum of 50 Euro for me now, you will be named in the book, you will receive a 20*30cm print of one of the photographs in the book, and – of course – a numbered and signed copy of my Socotra book!

Please support my project! I can go only on print if 100 people pledge for me. (For now, you just have to pledge. As soon as I found enough supporters, you can pay by wire transfer or PayPal.)

(Die-hard collectors and supporters only: I will hand-make an edition of five books. These will be covered in manually with Dragon Blood resin (acquired on Socotra) dyed goat leather, hand-bound according to old traditions and pigment-printed on heavy gallery-grade paper. These five exclusive volumes are numbered and signed, plus you will be specially acknowledged on the first page of regular edition. In addition, you will get a limited (edition of 12) 30*40cm signed and numbered print of a photograph of your choice as on show in London (there sold for 300 Euro.) Collector’s price: 1250 Euro)

Please support my work and pledge for it! It is a great book and worth to be brought out there!

 

Thank you for your help!

your
Claudius

 

Socotra – the Idea of an Island, Strange and Magical: ca. 128 pages, 47 large colour photographs including 6 fold out panoramas, two essays. Hard cover, 20*30cm. ca. 45 Euro plus shipping.

more…